Our 7 day lockdown school holiday guide: travel the world from home

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Jessica Taylor Yates

Posted September 14, 2021


Your family will have fun learning about new cultures, foods, songs and activities from around the globe with these ideas for kids in lockdown.

So, the school holidays are upon us once again. For many, this will unfortunately mean another 14 days in lockdown, with playgrounds the only respite from home. So what are parents to do in lockdown school holidays now that the jigsaws are completed and you've watched everything on your streaming service? It's time to travel - virtually, of course - with our school holiday guide to getting around the world in seven days!

Our lockdown around the world adventure is meant to be a fun way to learn about new cultures that get everyone involved, having fun, and doing activities that don't cost an arm and a leg. Each day has set food, learnings, activities and a film (note: 'chill time' for parents) to keep kids entertained.

While, of course, some of the below are just snippets of a culture and not representative of all the people, habits or foods in a country, it can be a great way for your kids to go back to school learning some facts about the world from home.

Before you get your passports out, don't worry - we've made sure you don't have to pre-purchase much besides some ingredients or crafts from your local supermarket, and that activities can be done indoors and outdoors, as well as your local neighbourhood, lockdown or not. With a nod to a new country for each day of the week, your family will have fun learning about new cultures, foods, songs and activities from around the globe.

So, get your passports ready, because your first stop is: 


Things to do with kids in lockdown at home

 

Monday: Off to France!

With 64 million residents, France is the biggest country in Western Europe and the world’s most popular tourist destination. People come from all over the world to visit sites and monuments such as the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe and the Seine River.

Food: Time to eat like a Parisian or from one of the best croissants in Melbourne. Bon appétit! 

Learn: Find out about famous French monuments by learning about them and colouring them in, either printed out or colouring online.

Activity: Make your own stain glass window from The Hunchback of Notre Dame with this tutorial at home with the kids. Formidable! 

You will need:

  • Tissue paper, a few different colours
  • Black A4 paper
  • Tracing paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue

Next up, it’s time for the Tour de France! Set off on a cycling adventure around your neighbourhood, or if you don’t have bikes, how about a Paris Fashion Week show? Put on all your best outfits and strut your stuff on the lounge room catwalk!

Music: You may wish to do your activities to the famous La Vie En Rose, or the soundtrack to Les Misérables in the background!

Chill time: Time for viewing The Hunchback of Notre Dame and a reading of The Little Prince before bed!

 

family eating croissants

Start your day with some delicious Parisian croissants to get in the mood. Viva La France! Image: Getty.


 

Tuesday: Off to Greece!

Greece is the home of so much culture - the Olympics, democracy, theatre, the Greek Gods, beautiful Mediterranean beaches and the famous Acropolis.

Food: Time for a delicious Greek Salad with this easy recipe.

Learn: For some indoor play activities, get to know some Greek phrases and have each child do some research on a Greek God. Get them to dress up and do a presentation telling you all about what they have learnt – in first person (or God), of course!

Activity: It’s time to paint a Greek vase to pot some veggies in, maybe for future Greek salads?

You will need (per child):

  • A pot or vase
  • Paint and paintbrushes

Music: It’s time to grab your bedsheets and make a toga out of your bedsheets, because it is time to dance the Zorba!

Chill time: Sit down in your togas and some baklava for a family viewing of Hercules. Opa!

painted Greek vase

Can you paint a beautiful Greek vase? Opa! Image: Getty.


 

Wednesday: Off to Kenya!

The Republic of Kenya is in East Africa and home to around 44 million people. The main official languages are Swahili and English (although almost 70 languages are spoken in Kenya!) It hosts the tallest mountain in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro, and the capital, Nairobi, is also the most populous city. 

Food: Let’s make some mandazi, a delicious Kenyan doughnut to be eaten at any time of day!

Learn: about the meaning behind the Kenyan flag while drawing your own to hang up on the wall.

Perhaps your children can also find out what a typical lunch would be for kids in Kenya and draw this too.

Activity: Make your own safari car!

You will need (per child):

  • 1 x cardboard box
  • 5 x paper plates
  • 4 x plastic cups or toilet paper rolls
  • Duct tape
  • Something to draw/paint your car with

Next, it’s time to make our safari cart and binoculars! Use this guide to get your safari cart ready. For binoculars, tape two of your cups/rolls together and cut out the ends.

It’s time to go on safari!

Werribee Zoo is running live streams to get a taste of animals in the African jungle to get you in the mood. After this, have some outside activity time. Let's pop into our safari jeeps and head around the park or neighbourhood and spot all the animals in our jungle - ants, birds, dogs and cats in the window.

If you have extra energy, consider hiding some toy animals around the yard for the kids to find on their safari tour!

Music: Give Cee-Foo Feel The Sounds of Kenya a try for a wonderful mix of music and imagery.

Chill time: Whilst not specific to Kenya, The Lion King is all about the African jungle – and this classic is always worth a re-watch while enjoying your Kenyan doughnuts! Hakuna Matata!

going on a home safari box car and toy lion

What are the chances you will spot a lion on your tour around the neighbourhood? Image: Getty.


 

Thursday: Off to Japan!  

Japan is located in the Pacific Ocean, where 70% of the country is mountainous, including its highest point, Mount Fuji. The country is a wonderful mix of old and new, with respects to ancient warriors, (the Samurai), and old traditions such as tea ceremonies, as well as being at the forefront of many technological and fashion advances in the modern era.

Food: Make your own sushi rolls or get some of this great Japanese takeaway.

Learn: Time for some fun education on the Japanese art of poetry, the haiku! Can you write your own? Use this simple haiku guide.

Activity: Stretching, foraging and folding!

You will need:

  • Paper - folded/cut into squares

After starting your day with some Japanese morning exercises (you can find some on the app at number 17), it’s time to go searching for Pokémon amongst the cherry blossom trees!

Then, come home and fold your wishes into some crafty origami.

Music: Time to crank the J-pop!

Chill time: Get your Studio Gibli on with a Japanese family film like My Neighbour Totoro or Spirited Away enjoyed with a lovely pot of tea. Arigato!

kid making origami

With the country fresh off hosting the Olympics, there's never been a better time to learn about Japan. Image: Getty.


 

Friday: Off to America!

USA! USA! The country is divided into 50 states and is home to many land and manmade monuments including the Grand Canyon, Statue of Liberty, San Francisco Bridge and Yosemite National Park. The official languages are English and Spanish, and it is the third largest country in the world.

Food: Time to get some hot dogs and roast some s’mores by the fire with this yummy recipe

Learn: Get your Route 66 on with these wonderful activities from Thought Co.

Younger kids may like to draw a poster for tourists – show us what to visit in the USA!

Activity: We’re on summer camp! Get everyone in the family to have a class they will be ‘teaching’ as we go round on camp today. Perhaps it’s painting, doll dressing, bike riding, gardening, cheerleading – but everyone gets a turn at being the camp counsellor!

Music: Nothing like The Boss (aka Bruce Springsteen) to get into the real Americana mood!

Chill time: Go out-school with a fun viewing of The Sandlot Kids while roasting some s’mores by the fire (or you know…over your stove if you don’t have one!)

kid making smores

Time for some s'mores by the camp fire! Image: Getty. 


 

Saturday: Off to Brazil!

Brazil is the biggest country in South America. It is home to the Amazon river and rainforest, Iguazu Falls, and Copacabana beach in Rio, where the famous Carnivale festival is hosted every year. The official language is Portuguese, and they have the largest variety of animals of any country of Earth!

Food: Yum yum, keep little hands busy with this Brazilian cheese bread recipe!

Learn: Do some research on one of the many animals from Brazil – a jaguar, macaw or monkey to name a few!

Draw this animal and show the family three facts about its life in Brazil!

Activity: Start by pumping some samba tunes and making your own musical rainsticks, a tube that is made to sound like falling rain!

You will need:

  • Coloured paper
  • Tube (eg paper towel)
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Tape
  • Uncooked rice, popcorn or beans

Next, do you have what it takes to be in the World Cup? Have a family game of soccer to see which of you reigns supreme!

Music: Get your feathers out, it’s time to dance to some kids samba!

Chill time: Time to relax with a viewing of Rio while munching on some Brazilian nuts. Viva la vida!

family game of soccer

Do you have what it takes to be the next World Cup superstar? Image: Getty.


 

Sunday: Off to Egypt!

Anicent Egypt was once one of the most powerful civilisations in the world. It is famous for the Great Sphinx and pyramids of Giza, the Nile River, its ancient tombs and pharoahs, magnificent jewels and foods. The Ancient Egyptians communicated through the use of hieroglyphs, or sacred writings - this must be why they invented pens and paper!

Food: Get together to make this delicious middle eastern dessert, the Middle Eastern Semolina

Learn: Ancient Egyptians would write using hieroglyphs. Whip out the paints (or pencils) and see if you can write out your name in colourful hieroglyphics with this handy guide!

Activity: Use this fun guide and get little hands dirty to make your own nile river!

Next, get mummified! Have a race to see who can deck themselves out as a (toilet paper) mummy the fastest!

Music: Try some Egyptian folk tunes or ancient songs from the Tomb of the Ancients to get you in the mood!

Chill time:  Pop on The Prince of Egypt and enjoy some of your dessert. Salam!

kid dressed up as a toilet paper mummy

Time to get mummified! Image: Getty. 


 

We hope this guide helped to cure some school holiday blues and you got to learn a bit and have some fun, too! It won't be soon before we are all back travelling and having these experiences in person - hopefully with a bit more knowledge from undertaking the activities above! 

Looking to start cooking dishes from around the world? 
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